63-False accusations

The next morning.
 I woke up while the sun was still up.
 Remnants of night still lingered outside my window.
 The city, shrouded in darkness, was still asleep.
 I peeked under the bed and saw that Femme was gone. I wondered if she had gone somewhere, or if she was already lurking in my shadow.
 ...... Well, it didn't matter which. I'm just going to do what I have to do.
 I was about to head for my morning workout when I suddenly realized.
I'm not sure what to do. One of my baskets is missing.
 I couldn't find one of the hands I usually wore.
 No matter where I looked, I couldn't find it.
 That basket was given to me by Haruna when I first joined the Red Lotus Fang.
 My name is engraved on it.
Haruna had jokingly said, "If you don't write your name down properly, you won't lose it.
 When Nahat and Irene saw it.
Nahat and Irene laughed and said, "It's not a child's possession.
 It's not a child's possession," they said with belly laughs.
 It was one of the memories of the time when we were still functioning as friends.
"......, that's it. I'll look for it later.
 The time to go to work is approaching. I can't be late.
 I left the room once I was done.
 After an hour of training at the barracks, he returned to the barracks. By the time he had showered and washed off his sweat, the sun had risen and it was time to go to work.
"Zeke. I need a minute.
 When he arrived at work, Bolton approached him.
There's something I'd like to put in your ear.

 ...... What is it? 
 I felt a strange stirring in my heart.
 We from the 5th squad are gathered in the commander's office.
 In the event that you've got a lot more than one, you'll be able to take a look at a few of them.
"Actually... I'm not sure what to do.
 Everyone, including me, was in a panic.
 The Orb of Light has been stolen?
Whoa! That's not good! The Demon Lord is sealed in the Orb of Light, right? It'll bring him back! Spinoza said.
"No, the light priestess is still alive. It won't come back anytime soon. But if we don't find her soon, we'll be in trouble.
 Bolton replies.
"Commander Bolton. Who stole the Orb of Light?
"I don't know. This morning, a knight who went to patrol the treasury found the lock broken, and when he went inside, the Orb of Light was already gone.
So he's the one who did it, isn't he? I'm cutting the cord.
...... It's a common pattern that the first person to find the orb is the killer. Spinoza. That's a pretty good argument for you.
You know what? Maybe if you beat him up he'll talk.
No, no, no! You can't do that! And don't be suspicious of people! It's too early to make assumptions without hard evidence.

"Sayla's right," said Bolton. "The knight has an alibi. He was at the woman's house all night. He couldn't have done it.
Someone else must've broken into the treasury and stolen the Orb of Light. I'm sure the Knights are scrambling to find it right now.
 Bolton puffed on his cigarette.
I'll help you, but make sure you don't do it. We'll help you, but we'll make sure they bow down to you.
 He had a bad look on his face.
 It was like he was trying to vent his frustration.
 That's when...
"Commander Bolton! The Knights are here!
"Speak of the devil.
 Bolton put out his cigarette with a twisted expression on his face. At about the same time, the door was violently opened.
 The knights came avalanching in.
"Whoa whoa. That's pretty rough, isn't it?
 Bolton looked sarcastically at Gregor, who was in the lead.
 Gregor did not respond, but raised his hand as if to give a signal.
 Then the knights all raised their weapons at the same time. The tips of their swords and spears were all aimed at one spot.
 All of them were pointed at me.
"...... What the hell are you doing?
"Zeke. You're in custody on suspicion of theft of the Orb of Light.
 That was a hard sentence to believe.

 I'm under suspicion of stealing the Orb of Light?
Hey. What the hell is this? Explain.
 Bolton said, scowling at Gregor.
"There's no explanation, it just means what it means. He's suspected of stealing the Orb of Light. That's why we're detaining him.
That can't be right! Yesterday, Zeke was in the church with me! It's impossible to steal the Orb of Light!
 Seira raised her voice to defend me.
"The orb was stolen around midnight. Your testimony is no alibi.
 That's what Gregor said.
"But ......! It's impossible for Zeke to steal the orb! I'm not sure what to make of it. I'm not sure what to do. You understand that, don't you, Gregor?
It's possible it was all an act. If he was in cahoots with the demons, fighting for his life is not a proof of loyalty.
What? I'm not sure what to do, but I'm not sure what to do. It's impossible that you are in contact with the demon race!
Don't let your emotions get the better of you. Woman.
 Gregor's words were as cold as a knife.
Your words are baseless and based on conjecture. The eyes of those who are trapped in their emotions can blind them to the truth.

It's .......
 That's when Sayla choked on her words.
"I mean... I'm sure you're not the only one. If there's someone who can prove it, there's no problem, right?
 Spinoza said while picking his ear with his pinky finger.
What's the matter with that?
I was at home last night, asleep. And there was Pham.
"Oh. Well, that settles it, doesn't it? If she was there, she's got an alibi. You saw Zeke, didn't you?
"...... me.
 Just as Fam was about to open his mouth.
 You'll be able to see an evil glint in Gregor's eyes as he stared at you. It was as if he was waiting for the moment his prey would fall into his trap.
 Then a possibility occurred to me.
No, wait.
 I said, stopping Pham from speaking.
"She was definitely in my room. But she fell asleep early. You can't prove she's innocent.
...... Zeke. What the hell are you doing?
 The others all looked at him suspiciously.
 I'm sure you're right.
 I've personally stopped them from proving my alibi.
 Last night, there was a fam in my room. She was sleeping in the crevice under my bed. She can testify that I was in my room.

 She's with the fifth squad.
 Not exactly a third party.
 So even if she proves my alibi, it's not very credible and she could be held for perjury just like me.
 Gregor's eyes when Femme was about to open her mouth.
 That was the look of someone with an evil plan.
"...... You know what to do.
 Gregor muttered in an inaudible whisper.
"Hmm. I'm sure you're right. You couldn't have been in your room at night. --Because we already have proof of the crime.
 With a smile plastered on his face, he pulled out something from his pocket.
 I was surprised when I saw it.
 I was surprised to see it, for it was the basket hand I had thought I had lost.
"I found this in the treasury. Your name was engraved on it. --Zeke. This basket is yours, isn't it?
"...... Oh, yes.
 It's got my name on it. You can't get away with it.
Then this is the best proof you'll get. You dropped the cage last night when you went into the treasury to steal the orb.
 Perhaps someone took the gauntlet from my room last night.
 And put it in the treasury.
 To frame me for the crime.
 That's how it works.
 I knew Gregor was leading us astray.
 Even if Fumm said I had an alibi, I'd still have to prove it. If we're not careful, she'll be held for perjury.

 I just barely managed to avoid it, but .......
 But I couldn't prove my own innocence.
It's too contrived," Bolton said.
 Bolton said.
"I can't help but think someone else did it to set him up.
Bolton. Don't speculate. The evidence is out there. We need to at least take Zeke into custody for questioning.
 Gregor said.
"Take him!
 The instructed knights try to take me in.
"Mr. Zeke!
"Hey. Hey! You guys gotta be kidding me!
...... We can't just let him go.
 The fifth squad's comrades tried to defy the knights.
 The two sides stare at each other, and the situation is tense.
 If this continues, a battle will start.
 If this happens, they'll get their hands on everyone.
"You guys. Stay out of this.
 I restrained the girls before they could draw their swords.
 It would be easy enough to defeat the Order and get out of here. But if I do, I'll be branded a criminal.
 I can't drag my friends into this.
I'll be fine. I'll come back and prove my innocence.
 He said, but he knew it would be difficult.
 Gregor is completely convinced that I'm guilty. Now that he has me in custody, he'll try to force me to serve my sentence to save face.

 If that's the case, there's only one way to be innocent.
 That is--
 To find out who framed me and capture him.
 I can't move freely when I'm locked up, but I have to do it to prove my innocence.